SUWANEE - No one appreciated the effort of the Collins Hill defense in the fourth quarter more than running back Charles Perkins.
Although Perkins was the offensive star of the game, it was his fumble late in the game that gave North Forsyth one last chance to steal the game and required Collins Hill to make one last defensive stand to prevent it.
It all worked out and the unbeaten Eagles held on for a 14-10 win at Alan Fahring Stadium.
"I had a bad play there at the end, that was on me, and the defense stepped it up," Perkins said. "We've been in so many close games like this one we've gotten used to it."
The Collins Hill defense seemed to have stopped North Forsyth at the 30 with 3:12 remaining in the game. But Perkins fumbled at the end of a 12-yard run and Quinton Riley recovered for the Raiders at the 40.
But the Eagles' defense refused to bend again and held strong for four downs to sew up the win.
"We just look at it as a total team effort," said Collins Hill coach Billy Wells.
Perkins, who has committed to play at Georgia Tech, had to carry a heavier load than usual when starting quarterback Tyler Heinicke hurt his shoulder while being sacked prior to halftime. The burden didn't seem to bother Perkins, who finished with 204 yards on 33 carries, with two touchdowns. Perkins now has 1,003 yards rushing and nine touchdowns.
It turned out to be a successful homecoming for Collins Hill, which improved to 5-0, 3-0 in Region 7-AAAAA, with the "Black Out" victory. The Eagles are off next week.
"It was another great night for Charles," Wells said. "We challenged him at halftime and he came up with a couple big first downs when we really needed it."
North Forsyth (3-2, 1-2) opened the scoring in the first quarter after Brett Garner intercepted Tyler Heinicke at the 33.
Eight plays later quarterback Joey Vicary powered over the left side for a 2-yard TD run. Vicary did a nice job running the team's option and led the Raiders with 110 yards on 23 carries.
Collins Hill answered with an 11-play 80-yard drive that was capped when Perkins crawled over the right side for 2-yard touchdown.
The Eagles took the lead after the defense forced another turnover, this time after Sean Perry recovered a fumbled that came about after Vicary was gang-tackled after an 8-yard keeper.
Collins Hill scored again on its next possession when Perkins took advantage of a nice block from Matt James to get free, and then broke a pair of tackles en route to a 34-yard touchdown.
North Forsyth got a little closer when Cole Allison kicked a 32-yard field goal with 21 seconds remaining. The points were made possible when Matt Hansard sacked Collins Hill quarterback Taylor Heinicke and Robert Miller recovered for North Forsyth at the 42.